This unusual and interesting surname if of early medieval Scottish origin, and is an Anglicized form of the Old Scots Gaelic "Mac an fhucadair", son of the fuller, from "Mac", son of, with the definite article "an", and the occupational name "fucadar", fuller. The work of a fuller was to scour and thicken newly woven cloth by beating and trampling it in water, "Walker" being the regular term for this occupation during the Middle Ages, especially in northern England, and in the Grampian region of Scotland. Job-descriptive surnames originally denoted the actual occupation of the namebearer, and later became hereditary. The Gaelic patronymic form of the name first appears on Scottish records in the early 16th Century (below), and subsequently takes a bewildering variety of forms. Examples include: Johannes McFuktor (without the article), and Elspet Innyfuktour (i.e. inion fucadair, the fuller's daughter), noted in Records of Strathdee in 1527; Donald roye McInocader (Knapdale, 1547), and John Daw McNucatter, who was charged with the spoliation of a ship called "The Providence of Dumbarton" in 1629. In the modern idiom the surname is variously spelt: MacNucator, MacNockater, MacKnockiter, MacKnocker, MacUchadair and Nucator. On July 22nd 1733, Lachlan, son of David McKnockiter, was christened at Edinkillie, Moray, Scotland. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Makinnocater, which was dated 1508, in the "Rental Book of Cupar-Angus", Scotland, during the reign of King James 1V of Scotland, 1488 - 1513. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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